Replacement for the shelve module?

Forafo San ppv.grps at
Fri Aug 19 18:21:48 CEST 2011

On Aug 19, 11:54 am, Thomas Jollans <t... at> wrote:
> On 19/08/11 17:31, Forafo San wrote:
> > Folks,
> > What might be a good replacement for the shelve module, but one that
> > can handle a few gigs of data. I'm doing some calculations on daily
> > stock prices and the result is a nested list like:
> > [[date_1, floating result 1],
> >  [date_2, floating result 2],
> > ...
> >  [date_n, floating result n]]
> > However, there are about 5,000 lists like that, one for each stock
> > symbol. Using the shelve module I could easily save them to a file
> > ( myshelvefile['symbol_1') = symbol_1_list) and likewise retrieve the
> > data. But shelve is deprecated AND when a lot of data is written
> > shelve was acting weird (refusing to write, filesizes reported with an
> > "ls" did not make sense, etc.).
> > Thanks in advance for your suggestions.
> Firstly, since when is shelve deprecated? Shouldn't there be a
> deprecation warning on
> If you want to keep your current approach of having an object containing
> all the data for each symbol, you will have to think about how to
> serialise the data, as well as how to store the documents/objects
> individually. For the serialisation, you can use pickle (as shelve does)
> or JSON (probably better because it's easier to edit directly, and
> therefore easier to debug).
> To store these documents, you could use a huge pickle'd Python
> dictionary (bad idea), a UNIX database (dbm module, anydbm in Python2;
> this is what shelve uses), or simple the file system: one file per
> serialised object.
> Looking at your use case, however, I think what you really should use is
> a SQL database. SQLite is part of Python and will do the job nicely.
> Just use a single table with three columns: symbol, date, value.
> Thomas

Sorry. There is no indication that shelve is deprecated. I was using
it on a FreeBSD system and it turns out that the bsddb module is
deprecated and confused it with the shelve module.

Thanks Ken and Thomas for your suggestions -- I will play around with
both and pick one.

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